January 20, 2016 - Aaron Wilson
Bills hire Kathyrn Smith as NFL's first full-time female assistant coach
The Buffalo Bills hired Kathryn Smith as special teams quality control coach, making her the first female to be named to a full-time coaching position in NFL history. “Kathryn Smith has done an outstanding job in the seven years that she has worked with our staff,” said Bills coach Rex Ryan. “She certainly deserves this promotion based on her knowledge and strong commitment, just to name a couple of her outstanding qualities, and I just know she’s going to do a great job serving in the role of quality control-special teams. Kathryn has been working in a football administrative role and assisted the assistant coaches for years. She has proven that she’s ready for the next step, so I’m excited and proud for her with this opportunity. She will work with Danny Crossman and Eric Smith involving a number of responsibilities. "I consulted with Bruce Arians on this since he was really the first NFL head coach to make this kind of move when he hired a female linebackers coach through the summer. You can see the success some of these young ladies are having in the coaching profession, such as the young lady that is an assistant to Coach (Greg) Popovich at the San Antonio Spurs, and realize how exciting this is for women like Kathryn Smith as well as the Bills organization.” Smith, who will enter her 14th year in the NFL next season, joins the Bills coaching ranks after spending 2015 as the team’s administrative assistant to the head coach. Prior to joining the Bills in 2015, Smith spent 12 seasons working for the New York Jets. Smith originally began her career in 2003 as a Jets gameday/special events intern. She became a college scouting intern in 2005 before being promoted to player personnel assistant in 2007 and going on to be named assistant to the head coach in 2014. Follow me on Twitter: @AaronWilson_NFL Aaron Wilson covers the Texans for The Houston Chronicle.